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View Full Version : OT:The Western Front. Have you ever seen anything more awful



The.Tyke
01-16-2008, 10:38 AM
If anybody's ever in any doubt as to how awful the destruction on the Western Front must have been 1914-1918, then just look at this. And this is just one small section of the front.

A body density map, produced when the ground was cleared after the battle of the Somme.

http://www.westernfrontassociation.com/thegreatwar/arti...nt/images/Image5.jpg (http://www.westernfrontassociation.com/thegreatwar/articles/mappingthefront/images/Image5.jpg)

Friendly_flyer
01-16-2008, 11:22 AM
No wonder most anti-war songs can be traced back to the Great War...

SilverFox67
01-16-2008, 11:25 AM
Vert sobering, and they were the bodies they could find on or very near the suface, lots lots more are still burried there after sinkining into the mud filled shell holes and collapsed section of trenches.

A brutal and bloody affair.

May they all rest in peace.

SilverFox

Blood_Splat
01-16-2008, 01:08 PM
I remember watching a program where they dug up the battlefield and still found remains of soldiers, weapons, and the trench lay outs.

SilverFox67
01-16-2008, 01:25 PM
My Great Grandfather fought with the Black Watch during the Somme.

He is still missing, somewhere on those bloody fields, hopefully buried as an "unknown soldier of the great war"

SilverFox

x6BL_Brando
01-16-2008, 01:41 PM
I received a late Christmas present the other day. The complete TV documentary series (first broadcast in 1976) on the Great War, on DVDs. It's a fascinating archive of the greatest conflict Mankind had ever seen, which also paved the way for the next cataclysm.

B

foxyboy1964
01-16-2008, 01:53 PM
Good grief. Does anyone know how large the grids are? One mile square?

Airmail109
01-16-2008, 02:06 PM
Originally posted by foxyboy1964:
Good grief. Does anyone know how large the grids are? One mile square?

Kilometer Square

One of them has 800 bodies in a 500m2 box, basically bodies lying on top of each other

http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-indifferent.gif

leitmotiv
01-16-2008, 02:07 PM
Appalling.

foxyboy1964
01-16-2008, 02:24 PM
Originally posted by Aimail101:
Kilometer Square


God, that's even worse.

The.Tyke
01-16-2008, 02:29 PM
Apparently there was so much shelling in the 1Km square round high wood and the ground so churned up that there was no body count done.

Insuber
01-16-2008, 02:38 PM
It's the awesome effects of high explosives and machine guns on human beings thrown in frontal attacks, the industrialised death. Depressing. Every figure hides persons with parents, wives, sons, life projects cut abruptly by the Death Scythe, the Harvester of Souls.

I think that every European family counts ancestors killed or wounded in the Great War, as every small village has a monument with lists of deads. They wasted their young lives and their names will fall into oblivion.

Never again!

foxyboy1964
01-16-2008, 02:51 PM
I hear what you're saying Insuber, but it could happen again. Look at the Balkans in the early 90's. If our "leaders" decide that they have found a "just cause" then make no mistake we'd be up to our necks in it again.

It amazes me that after thousands of years the human race keeps making the same bloody mistakes.

luftluuver
01-16-2008, 02:54 PM
Look at this
http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/FWWcasualties.htm

Insuber
01-16-2008, 03:07 PM
Foxyboy Balkans are my nightmare, war in old Europe raging again and again.

Luftluuver thanks for the link. The figures are the official loss statistics, which are btw considered underestimated. A sad detail, of the 126'000 US deads, a half was due to the Spanish Disease. The rest fought with valor and fell in the last months of the war.

I invite everybody to read books on WWI, they make you appreciate your life better.


Regards,
Insuber

Airmail109
01-16-2008, 03:39 PM
Jeeze even If the Balkans does kick off it will never get anything near like that.

Warfare has changed totally, Apache Gunships, Main Battle Tanks, Laser Guided Bombs, and Air Mobile troops would see to it that casualties on that scale will never be seen again in Europe. Unless someone decides to lob a tactical nuke.

On a side note two of my uncles were Snipers on the somme, both survived.

Lucius_Esox
01-16-2008, 03:44 PM
I drove down to Switzerland from Calais once. The road took us roughly along the direction of the 1stww front line I think. The amount of cemeteries on the route was truly awful, as is that map!!!

Airmail109
01-16-2008, 03:50 PM
Anyway we'll see about the Balkans, we've only got less than one month to wait to see if it starts world war 3 like some nutters predict.

If anything happens sporadic fighting will take place until NATO sends even more peace keepers.

thefruitbat
01-16-2008, 03:54 PM
Interesting to hear about them not counting at high wood, i thought something must be wrong there.

If any of you are interested the tank finally came of age, on 15th sept at flers. 25 of the 42 tanks reached the start line, and of these 17 were destroyed, but in a single leap the army was 2 miles beyond high wood and delville wood. This led to the famous late headlines on the 15th
'a tank is driving down the main street of flers with the british army cheering behind'

It was the 14th of july when the british first attacked high wood, and there was a window on the 14th when they could of walked in unoppossed, unfortunatley they didnt try until to late in the day. Despite holding the tip of the wood from there on in, despite numerous attacks, they didnt gain full control until the 15th of sept.

cheers fruitbat

ps good find

The.Tyke
01-17-2008, 07:28 AM
Originally posted by Aimail101:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by foxyboy1964:
Good grief. Does anyone know how large the grids are? One mile square?

Kilometer Square

One of them has 800 bodies in a 500m2 box, basically bodies lying on top of each other

http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-indifferent.gif </div></BLOCKQUOTE>


It's much worse,apparently the boxes are not even 500m2, but 230m2 http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif

http://1914-1918.invisionzone.com/forums/index.php?show...7818&hl=body+density (http://1914-1918.invisionzone.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=67818&hl=body+density)

Chris0382
01-17-2008, 07:47 AM
Im surprised it wasnt declared one of the worlds most creepiest palces as Gettysburg has been declared one of the top 10 and more people died there then Gettysburg.

foxyboy1964
01-17-2008, 09:38 AM
Originally posted by The.Tyke:
It's much worse,apparently the boxes are not even 500m2, but 230m2 http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif

http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

TheGozr
01-17-2008, 10:34 AM
Well .. Grand father and my great grand father were in many battles they were also in Verdun and survived together.. grand father then went to eastern Europe as well. Great grand father did the Prussian war and ww1 and became the Prefet of Constantine.

nudibranches
01-17-2008, 03:42 PM
These are appalling figures.

But didn't 22-plus million Russians die in the Second World War?

Total casualties of something like 60 million?

Human beings are very good at destroying....everything, the planet, environment, species, eco-system, each other.

thefruitbat
01-17-2008, 04:04 PM
Originally posted by nudibranches:
These are appalling figures.

But didn't 22-plus million Russians die in the Second World War?

Total casualties of something like 60 million?

Human beings are very good at destroying....everything, the planet, environment, species, eco-system, each other.

Its a valid point that the casualties of ussr were around 20 million ish, but there is a CRUCIAL difference betweeen comparing WW1 v WW2 casualties, and that is simply, that a massive proportion of ww1 casualties were combatants, unlike WW2, where huge numbers of civillians died.

I would go further and say, and this is my opinion only, that only Stalingrad in WW2 was one of the few WW2 battles that had some parity to the suffering on the Somme, Verdun and 3rd Ypres. I will go further and submit that these battles, were the pinnacle of human suffering enginered by mankind by way of war.

cheers fruitbat

Vevster
01-18-2008, 04:41 AM
Verdun Memorial

http://www.acompletewasteofspace.com/albums/Verdun-and-...s/DSCN0300.sized.jpg (http://www.acompletewasteofspace.com/albums/Verdun-and-Reims/DSCN0300.sized.jpg)

Traces of the shelling, 90 years after

http://www.acompletewasteofspace.com/albums/Verdun-and-...s/DSCN0304.sized.jpg (http://www.acompletewasteofspace.com/albums/Verdun-and-Reims/DSCN0304.sized.jpg)

Pics of my trip ther last year

http://www.acompletewasteofspace.com/modules.php?set_al...clude=view_album.php (http://www.acompletewasteofspace.com/modules.php?set_albumName=Verdun-and-Reims&op=modload&name=gallery&file=index&include=view_album.php)

TgD Thunderbolt56
01-18-2008, 07:15 AM
That map is very telling. I have a fairly extensive library (mostly based on WWI and WWII aviation) and in all honesty the most compelling reading, for me, are some of the memoir-based accounts from WWI.

Maybe a bit macabre, but good post nonetheless. Thanks for sharing.

Nice pics too Vevster. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/agreepost.gif

Insuber
01-18-2008, 07:32 AM
Originally posted by nudibranches:
These are appalling figures.

But didn't 22-plus million Russians die in the Second World War?

Total casualties of something like 60 million?

Human beings are very good at destroying....everything, the planet, environment, species, eco-system, each other.


I'm not 100% sure, and in the GPW there were for sure many millions of casualties (in the first 6 months after June 22nd attack the K/L ratio was 50 Russian soldiers to 1 German soldier), but I knew that the 20 million figure included also the non-born babies due to the natality decrease over the following decades.

Regards,
Insuber

PBNA-Boosher
02-12-2008, 09:34 AM
The 20 million figure also includes the people lost in the Stalinist Purges.

Phas3e
02-12-2008, 02:27 PM
My Great Grandfather went in action with the NZ infantry at Flers on 15th sept, we dont know much of his time at the front, apart from him ending up in a French field hospital with 4 bullets in him and suffering from a mustard gas attack.

He lost an eye had a bullet in the should and stomach and his pocket bible stopped a bullet from hitting his heart.
I got to see the bible once, but it went to another side of the family after my Great Ggrandmother died.

Blutarski2004
02-13-2008, 06:24 AM
The three great slaughterhouses of the Western Front in WW1 - Verdun, the Somme, and Paaschendaele. It just beggars the imagination.

And on the Austro-Italian front, the Isonzo must also have been ghastly, as the Italian army conducted something like 11 separate offensives over the same ground.